on 18 August 2014
Author Sibel Hodge kindly sent me an advanced copy of this book but this is not what makes me give it a five star rating. I have read previous books by this author but none of the Amber Fox series, nor am I usually into reading short stories / novella.
This book is a good fun light hearted whodunnit which certainly manages to conjour the festivities and feelings of Christmas , even when read mid summer! I would recommend this book to anyone who wants a book that doesn't take itself too seriously and is just a light read. It also works as a good stand-alone story which requires no prior knowledge from other books in the Amber Fox series.
I will definitely be buying the other books in the series as nice light relief to the weightier books that make up my usual reading preferences.
Bravo Sibel Hodge ....The impossible has happened, I am now converted to chic-lit !
If you are looking for something just a bit different with your Christmas reading this year, then this could easily be the book for you. Santa Claus, Lies and Murder, is a short (under 100 pages) cozy mystery novella, that is very easy to read, has a great selection of characters and just one mystery to solve.
The bones of the original St Nicholas have been stolen from a special exhibit at the annex branch of the Natural History Museum on Christmas Eve. That's right some lowlifes have stolen Santa on Christmas Eve! But of course the question on everyone's lips is who and why?
Amber Fox and partner Brad, investigate the theft for their insurance investigation practice, despite knowing they won't be giving a payout. But because its Christmas they feel its only right to attempt to return St Nicholas' bones to their rightful place, if they can.
As this is a cozy mystery, you have a limited suspect pool to go for, and their computer guy Hacker is very fast at getting all the background information required on the suspects. One of the more disturbing pieces of information he finds, is about a fetish belonging to one of the curators, that is giving me the heebie-jeebies, and scaring me a lot.
If you haven't read any of the Amber Fox books before, don't worry this does work as a standalone, especially as its so short, all the focus is on the mystery, so the background on the main characters although mentioned very briefly, isn't really needed. As someone who hasn't read one of these books for at least a year (I think I forgot to keep checking for new releases), I remembered the basics of Amber, Brad and other recurring characters quite easily, which did help with my instant involvement.
Santa Clause, Lies and Murder is a wonderful addition to this series, and its very rare that you get to read a book that mentions Santa being stolen. There is also some interesting information about the bones, and about Saint Nicholas himself, as well as some other artefacts that were displayed. I didn't work out the motive or the thief, and it did make sense, and was wrapped up rather nicely. This whole story takes place over one day, making it a short and sweet, festive cozy mystery.
Brilliant author Sibel Hodge, has very kindly sent me an advanced review copy of this book, the latest in her fantastic Amber Fox Mysteries series. I hadn't read any of the books in this series before, but now that I have, I am really glad to have started it as it is absolutely great, well written and entertaining.
It's Christmas time and someone has stolen a priceless, irreplaceable collection from the Natural History Museum in Hertford. This collection does not consist of animal or insect exhibits, but of antique icons, statues and the actual bones of St Nicholas, the original Santa Claus.
Amber Fox, an Insurance Investigator from Hi-Tec Insurance, is sent by her boss (and lover) Brad to the museum to investigate this burglary and interrogate the employees.
Because of St Nicholas's close ties with Christmas, Amber is desperate to find these bones and return them for everyone to enjoy as soon as possible, but she soon finds out that it's not gonna be easy; all employees at the museum seem odd and all seem to have something to hide.
To complicate things further, murder is soon added to the mystery's recipe. Who is the killer? Who stole the saint's bones? Where are they? Will Amber make it on time to find the key to unlock this mystery and bring back the priceless collection in time for Christmas? Or is Santa lost forever?
Living in a village whose patron saint is St Nicholas, and having named a son after the saint, I really had an extra great time reading this book. I found myself chuckling and laughing-out-loud all the way, and the mystery kept me guessing till the end. The author in fact does a brilliant job in balancing humour with mystery throughout. Ms Hodge also manages to give us a brief insight into the life of and the cult surrounding this great saint, who with time, folklore has morphed into the famous Santa Claus.
Filled with a bunch of very likeable and believable characters, this book is great and will keep any mystery lover entertained from start to finish. I highly recommend it and will surely read all the other books in the series. Ms Hodge Well Done!!
on 31 August 2014
It was so nice to be reading about Amber and Brad, Tia and Hacker again (although you don't need to have read the previous books to enjoy this), the quirky humour throughout integrates wonderfully with the factual info surrounding St Nicholas. I loved learning a bit of the history surrounding Christmas, it was thoroughly enjoyable all round.
If you haven't read Sibel Hodge's work before, then I thoroughly recommend that you do, she writes with such wit and humour, it makes her stand alone as an utterly brilliant and engaging author. Pour yourself a hot cup of tea, turn off the phone, lock the door and start with Fashion, Lies and Murder, work your way through all of these and finish with Look Behind You (not the Amber Fox series) you really won't regret it.
on 25 September 2014
I was sent a review copy of this in exchange for an honest review.
I have enjoyed all the books in the Amber Fox series and this one doesn't disappoint. This is a shorter story as it is a novella but a fun addition to the series. I loved the "fight" scene at the end, had me laughing out loud. An enjoyable, light-hearted read - mystery and humour. I enjoyed this and can happily recommend it along with the rest of the series.
on 22 December 2014
The perfect quickie Xmas read which was fun and introduced me to the Amber Fox series. I can now say for definite I will be reading the four full length books. This was funny, fast paced and featured an extremely likeable heroine. The story was as short as expected but action packed. Well worth the price.
on 17 August 2014
Amber Fox is back and I'm happy to read a new story, even if it is just a shorter filler.
It is Christmas Eve and St Nicholas' bones have been stolen from a small local museum.
Having read and enjoyed the first four Amber stories, I immediately felt at home in the story. In saying that, I'm sure it works fine as a stand-alone, with just a few references to back story.
As this is a chick-lit mystery, you know how things will pan out, but it's all about the journey and this was an interesting, fun whodunnit.
Sibel Hodge has branched out into other genres recently, but I like this genre by her the best.
on 9 August 2014
Around Christmas time when time is precious I enjoy having festive short stories to read between fitting in all those other things we have going on! This is perfect!
I have read all the other Amber Fox stories and enjoyed them immensely, so was thrilled when this came out.
Amber is investigating the theft of the bones of St Nicolas, the original Santa, from an exhibition in a local museum. She just can't let Christmas come around without Santa! As usual there are loads of thrills and spills, and plenty of saucy action too, all coming together for a fantastic, fun, festive read!
on 7 August 2014
Sibel Hodge. Amber Fox 4.5
Santa Claus, Lies and Murder.
This is a short story in the brilliant Amber Fox series, in which you'll find both captivating and hilarious. Amber who is an investigator for the hi-tec insurance company gets a case involving the theft of St Nicholas's bones from a local museum. Where do they start to look, and when an employee winds up being murdered things begin to fall into place. The in house banter between Amber, Brad, Tia and Hacker is brilliant, it makes this book so easy to read.
on 15 August 2014
I was really pleased when I saw that Sibel Hodge had written another Amber Fox mystery. Although 'Santa Claus, Lies and Murder' is short it is full of the usual fun, mystery and entertainment, and the regular characters appear in their full colour. Even though this is part of an ongoing series it can be read alone and still be very enjoyable.
I highly recommend this novella as well as the complete series.